57 | A Flawed Plan

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"You'll never leave me, Lily. Never," Layla shrieked, still coming for me.

The hook swung at my face, and I dipped, falling onto my back. When my body hit the ground, I kicked my right foot at her, the blade heel sinking into her stomach a bit.

Layla let out a shocking gasp and hunched over. A hand went to her stomach, and blood leaked from the tiny, but deep incision. The redness mixed with the filth on her body, creating a deep garnet color.

Layla gave me a surprised expression. "Why, Lily? Why would you do this to me? I love you."

Her hurt expression actually made my heart hurt for a second. Betrayal was written all over her face. No—she was trying to kill you. Don't feel bad.

My hands went for the hook on the floor, but Layla took it away in time, slicing it across my palm. Severe agony swarmed throughout my hand and wrist, but I sighed, eating the pain.

A scream left her throat as Layla tried to hurl the hook at me again. I twirled out of reach. The hook smacked into the wooden floor so hard that it broke through the surface, becoming lodged.

As she tried to pull it out, I hopped to my feet and punched her on the side of her orbital bone with every ounce of emotion that I could muster. My fist connected hard, sending pain up my wrist again as she got flung back.

She let out a loud yell as her body tumbled back from my hit, falling into the candle altar on the left. The fiery candles shuffled everywhere. One lit the lacy tablecloth on fire while others tumbled onto the floor, igniting the clothes scattered around.

It took mere moments for bright blazes to form everywhere. Piercing screams tangled in the air as Layla's hair caught fire, the flames mingling in her wild curls.

Her dirty hands patted at the flame as she jumped around. That's when I took the time to yank the hook out of the ground and tossed it at her head.

The back of the metal hook clicked with her skull, and she fell flat on her face, not moving an inch. Was she dead? No, I didn't have time to look. Or should I do the right thing—

"Betinia, untie me!" Rucker's voice brought me out of my haze, and I hurried over, untying his hands before I did the same to Sebastian, Yaz, and Khan.

The fire began to spread from the altar to other parts of the room. Thick clouds of smoke coursed throughout the ceiling.

"Someone untie me!" Gmie stared at us before looking at the fire spreading around her.

Yaz chuckled, wiping some lint off her shirt. "Nah. You deserve to die in here."

"Untie me." Fee grunted, staring at me. "Please."

He never did anything bad to me. So, I hurried over and untied the rope and cut through the plastic ties. Once I did that, he let out a yell and broke out of the chains around his wrists before he tore the chains off his ankles.

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